Case Study – Café Spice Namasté
Challenge: How can a restaurant, known for its modern twist on authentic Indian cuisine, serve its signature traditional dishes to a high quality when its new location cannot accommodate a tandoor?
Cyrus Todiwala OBE, DL, chef patron, has just re-located the beloved and highly popular Café Spice Namasté after almost 30 years in its previous location. Trade is steadily re-establishing at the new site but restrictions in the new kitchen meant no tandoor!
Solution: The Panasonic SCV2 speed convection oven, with its compact footprint and high speed cooking capabilities at high temperatures was a valuable find after a chance conversation.
Consistency is key
Café Spice Namasté has always attracted a mixed customer base, from young professionals to families, and as such needs to offer a flexible menu from an adaptable operation. But the heart of its business has always been about quality, consistency and speed of service.
Cyrus says, “We are always trying new things so we can be inventive with our menu and introduce customers to the many facets of our cuisine. It can be very challenging during peak times and consistency can be affected. We are also duty bound to serve some of the more traditional dishes such as our legendary Parsee Lamb Dhaansaak, Goan Prawn Curry, Ginger Seasoned Lamb Cutlets, Lamb Samosas and Halloumi Shashlik. Some of these we’d normally cook in a tandoor but fire restrictions in our new kitchen mean we can’t have one – a potential disaster!
“A chance conversation with Panasonic gave us insight into the capabilities of the SCV2 speed convection oven; three months into using it now and we haven’t looked back! It allows great efficiency and consistency and has proved to be a decent alternative to a traditional tandoor. The speed with which it cooks is one of its most notable, useful features, as well as its compact size, which is a bonus. Pre-programming the cook times means the oven delivers consistency every time, it is fairly low maintenance and also doubles up as a rather powerful air fryer too.”
Chef Manpreet Ahuja, who heads up kitchen operations, added, “The Panasonic SCV2 oven has more than proved its usefulness beyond all predictable doubt. I was sceptical at first but it has now become an integral part of the kitchen, like an additional team member.”